Opening a business is often considered an investment because of the potential to earn a profit and get back one’s capital. Micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSME) contribute so much to the economy and create jobs for the community. Starting a business is one of the best paths to long-term wealth, but it’s not without challenges.
Before opening a business, any enterprising person has to consider many factors, such as your background, skills, interest, and access to financing. Most don’t require advanced degrees, and a lot can be done with a small capital.
Here are some ideas for small businesses you can start investing in:
Handcrafted and Homemade Goods
You have limitless options in figuring out what business to start if you’re creative and good with your hands since there is always a demand for homemade and handcrafted goods, whether they’re DIY soaps, candles, sauces, and even makeup and perfume. On the customer’s end, the allure of receiving a parcel from a small business begins with the unboxing itself since most handcrafted items come in creative custom packaging. Take note of the applicable regulations in your product category, especially for food items and those that have to be applied to the skin.
Dropshipping is one of the quickest and cheapest businesses to start. It’s when a third party directly supplies and ships products to customers on your behalf. You can set up an online store of curated products from several suppliers. After a customer checks out their cart, you forward the order to the supplier for fulfillment. Your job is more on marketing, customer service, and inventory management than anything else. Dropshipping is a great way to test a product in the market before you start with your own original ones.
Print-on-demand is a spin of the dropshipping model, but the difference is you get to customize the products with your designs before they are shipped to the customer. This can be applied not just to T-shirts but also to other items, including phone cases, hoodies, and tote bags. The idea is to create something original out of what can be considered blank canvasses so let your creativity go wild! You don’t even need to have a background in design since many sites offer easy customizable templates.
Not many people enjoy cleaning or have time to do it because of work and other engagements. They would rather have someone do it for them, which is true for many households. It doesn’t take much to start a cleaning service business since you don’t need a physical office, and equipment costs are low and readily available at your local supermarket or online. Most cleaners earn around $20 to $30 per hour, but rates can go higher for commercial cleaning jobs.
Personal Training and Fitness
COVID-19 restrictions have severely impacted gyms and fitness centers, but the industry has learned to adapt. Now more than ever, there is a need for people to exercise and keep an active lifestyle. Personal trainers have found a new way to connect with their clients through social media, and some have even amassed a massive following on digital platforms. You need to get a formal certification exam to get started, but sometimes, just being a fitness enthusiast can already help you attract clients.
The pandemic has made things more challenging for students to learn, with remote education becoming the norm. Tutoring services can help close the gap for those struggling to understand certain subjects, such as mathematics and science. Startup costs are also very low. Basic services provided by video conferencing software and other mobile apps are generally free. You can charge anywhere from $25 to $60 per hour, depending on your academic background and the scope of discussion.
The capital needed to open a storage facility depends on the location. The cost of real estate property in Manhattan, New York, is more expensive than in Manhattan, Kansas. The great thing about storage facilities, though, is that it requires less manual work. If you already have the space, you only need a small staff to handle security and customer service. No technical training is necessary since the things brought in by your tenants just sit there for the most part.
The best way to market a product or service is through digital platforms. With new businesses popping up, demand for digital marketing services is aplenty. While some aspects of the industry need technical knowledge, much of it can be learned on the go, which makes startup costs pretty low. Typically, a digital marketing agency undertakes copywriting, social media management, web design, and content creation. Most start as solopreneurs who eventually scale up by hiring new people with expertise in the more technical side of the operations.
Monetizing an Audience
In the information age, content is king! That’s why becoming an influencer and content creator is a full-time job in of itself, with some personalities already having a team to manage their brand. Being able to capture a segment of the internet, keep your audience’s attention, and earn money while doing so is truly a skill. You should be ready to play the long game, though, since competition is stiff and endorsement deals don’t come by too often. Moreover, amassing a massive audience does not happen overnight. Some are lucky enough to go viral after just getting started, but for most, it takes months to years to build a decent following, much more make yourself a household name in the sphere.
There are always risks when it comes to starting a business, even the small ones. Your best bets are businesses that are resilient, flexible, and offer good margins. The market always responds to a demand or a gap that hasn’t been fulfilled yet. These are the industries you should look out for when trying to figure out the business model that works best for you. This list is in no way exhaustive and is only a starting point for you to be inspired and start doing further research. But no matter what you invest in, any successful business always requires a good plan, experience, and working with the right people.